Hate is a strong word. Perhaps loathe, disapprove, or dislike is a better choice. We need a lot less hate in our world these days - I think that's something we can all agree on. And we all need to be better to each other, too. So who better to start being better to than your friendly developer. That's a lot of betters! But hey, it's one of our mantras at Vye to #getbetter. I asked the development team at Vye to weigh in, and we came up with 11 things our marketing teammates do that our development team...dislikes.
1. Uploading images that are way too large
Most developers care deeply about website page performance. We work hard to make blazing fast sites, and for good reason. Google now uses Core Web Vitals for page rank, so it's important to have a performant site if you want to rank well. Images are typically the largest resources on a page, and the bigger they are, the slower they load. We have some control over restricting the use of too-large images, but we also need a little help from our friends. If a content section is 1200px wide, that's the max size your image needs to be. Please don't upload a 5000px, 12MB image to a page. One image that large can single-handedly take your green performant page into the red.
2. Large video backgrounds
Just when you thought images were bad for page load and performance, in comes a 50MB video background! Boom, page load tanks, your core web vitals go red, and your bounce rate goes through the roof because your page takes 10-seconds to load. As cool as a video background might be, don't get carried away. If you want a speedy site the best route is to avoid using them altogether. But if you have to, try to compress that video and keep it under 5MB.
3. Not adding alt text or adding it incorrectly
Alt text helps screen-reading tools describe images to visually impaired readers. It allows search engines to crawl and rank your website better. If you're not adding alt text, you're losing out on a valuable source of organic traffic.
But simply adding an alt text isn't enough. Remember to use best practices when adding them:
Describe your image and be specific
Keep the text to fewer than 125 characters
Don't use 'picture' or 'image'
Don't keyword stuff (it might seem like a good idea, but it won't help you here)
4. Copying and pasting from external sources
When you're doing the content entry, you probably find it easy to copy from external sources like Google Docs or Microsoft Word. I can't blame you for that. However, it comes at a cost, and that cost is often unseen. When you copy from an external source, you don't just get the text — you get all of the styles along with it. All styles from font sizes to background colors and heading styles are copied with that little Control-C action. When pasting into HubSpot (and other CMS platforms), it's important to use the clear styles button in your rich text editor. This strips out all the unnecessary styles that come along with a copy and paste in a clean format.
5. Adding extra vertical space with manual breaks
If you're looking to get some extra vertical space between images, text, or other elements, don't add manual line breaks with heading or paragraph tags. Use margin and padding within website modules to add space above and below. By doing this, you'll be able to get the exact spacing you want. Plus, you don't run the risk of ruining your semantics and adding an empty heading tag (ex: H1 or H2). There are also base styles applied at the theme level to add consistent vertical spacing between elements. If it's a global issue across the whole site, ask your developer to make changes to those base styles in the CSS.
6. "Can you make the logo bigger?"
Yes, we know you love your brand. You want it front and center. A larger logo won't make your brand more remarkable, and there's no correlation between its size and the effectiveness of your website. Let the content do the talking to your customer and how you can help them. It's about them...not you. Same thing goes for brand elements such as icons, owned graphics, and digital mascots. While these elements can, and should, be tastefully woven throughout a website design, they shouldn't be so overwhelming as to outshine the thing users actually care about: getting the information they need.
7. Using the words "easy" or "that shouldn't take long"
Most developers love the word "easy," except when it's said without a true understanding of what needs to happen. Something that a client or marketer might think is a 10-minute fix may very well take 5-6 hours...you just never know. Or how about "that shouldn't take long"? Unless you have a deep understanding of development, it's unlikely you'll be able to anticipate exactly how long a development fix might take. You wouldn't tell a doctor that a minor surgery "shouldn't take long." You wouldn't tell your mechanic that a fix to your vehicle "should be easy". Same premise here. Make sure to ask questions surrounding the pain point or goal, and then discuss what could solve or achieve it. What is far more helpful than making assumptions is talking through a challenge and working together to uncover ways to get to the solution. Who knows? Maybe it actually is an easy fix.
8. Not trying
Most developers spend countless hours making a website easy for clients and marketers to make updates without any coding knowledge. I know I do. We want to empower you all to feel comfortable and confident with your website without fear of breaking it. Before you assume that something has to be done by a developer, try diving in to see if you can update some content or images. Even if you can't, your developer will appreciate the effort.
9. Adding unnecessary/excessive tracking scripts
Tracking scripts are gold for marketers —we get that. We don't want to take away those data-rich analytics or valuable heat maps that help you make educated recommendations. But please be intentional with them. Are you using them? Are they truly valuable? If not, remove them. Each tracking script is one more resource that you'll have to load on your site and will inevitably slow down your page load.
10. Massive forms
Do you really need that many fields? Perhaps not. Does your user really want to fill out that many fields? I would venture to guess most definitely not. Make it easy on your users and only ask for pertinent information that you as a marketer need to do your job successfully. Your user's time is valuable. If you're overwhelming users by asking for too much time, you might just lose them in the process.
11. Manually adding styles
The rich text editors in your CMS have so many pretty buttons. You can adjust the font family to Impact, maybe change the font size to 130px. Here's a color option to change the text to red with a pink background! 🤩 But please, leave the styling and brand to your designers and developers. We'll take care of colors, sizing, and fonts so you don't have to! Please...you don't have to.
Show your developers some love. Most developers are driven by a desire to help you solve your biggest challenges. A little love goes a long way!
Want to work with a deep bench of talented developers with a plethora of experience in HubSpot, Wordpress, custom programming and more? We've got you covered. Get in touch here.
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